100 “greatest” guitarists of all time

Rolling Stone magazine published their 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time. The top 10:

  1. Jimi Hendrix
  2. Duane Allman of the Allman Brothers Band
  3. B.B. King
  4. Eric Clapton
  5. Robert Johnson
  6. Chuck Berry
  7. Stevie Ray Vaughan
  8. Ry Cooder
  9. Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin [“of Led Zeppelin”?! duh]
  10. Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones [double duh]

Duane Allman?! Chuck Berry?!! If you’re a guitarist, don’t bother looking at the complete list; you’ll want to punch your monitor.

1,756 Replies to “100 “greatest” guitarists of all time”

  1. Oh, and as long as we’re doing lists:
    Jimmy Page- He was the mastermind of the greatest band of all time, a genius producer, as well as being a great and influential guitar player.

    Eric Clapton- There has never been a better soloist than Clapton. If you don’t believe me, check out Cream’s 2005 reunion. His technique is better than ever.

    Jimi Hendrix- The guy had way too much in his head, and sometimes he overloaded his songs with multiple guitar tracks or new effects. There’s no denying his ability, though. Many of his songs were masterworks. My personal favorite is All Along the Watchtower. Bob Dylan wrote it, and after hearing Hendrix’s version, said that it was his song now.

  2. just skimmed through commments,and it seems there written by teenagers with cloth ears,why is’nt rory gallagher up there ?

  3. How cool, one thread that’s lasted for 3 1/2 years! One thing I think players were rated by is what they said with their instruments…the magic they made…Berry created (I’m pretty sure)a rock guitar vibe that’s lasted till now…Richards created deep vibe as I think Cobain, White and others did, including NEIL YOUNG…one of my favorites, though he’s technically not “hot” at all…he admits he doesn’t even know his scales! But listen to Ragged Glory, Rocking in the Free world and others and feel what he creates! I tried playing along with the Ragged Glory CD and realized my riffs were “better” (more complicated, more variation) but his PLAYING was so much better…because he’s about the emotion of the song above all else. I hear my students playing better than me often, because they aren’t burdened with too much knowledge and ability. For my tastes, the best guitarists are the ones who tell the greatest stories with their axes. Course there are a million stories and million ways to tell them…some require great technique and are awesome (Randy Rhoads, Joe Satriani)but to focus only on technique is to forget the magic that makes music, uh….magic. I listened to a cable TV blues station and heard so many hot players, and I was so jazzed that I could jam with them…then I heard a Robert Johnson song…he didn’t NEED all those notes…he just mastered that guitar…tamed it to fit his amazing story. God, what a hard skill…forgetting what we know and making it about the song, not our egos

  4. PS Jimi Hendrix has always been my favorite, because he the’s only player who made the guitar disappear..in the sense that there was no sense (except on his uninspired recordings, of which there are a lot out there) that some one was playing an instrument…his soul just came flying out, not slowed down at all by the guitar. When you hear other, great players, no matter how good they are, it feels like someone working, to a degree. With Hendrix, it was pure flight. Actually it’s hard to describe…but he just stands out…he is in a different world…it goes beyond notes and into a deep place…and the funny thing is, there are times when he’s not in tune, and not inspired and it sounds like crap, because he’s fighting to get to that sweet place, he’s all about risk and being real, fighting to be real…but when he gets there, there is nothing like it. If you listen to Johnny B Goode from Monterey Pop, or Rock Me Baby, it’s a cool example of effortless, toying with fun songs (I can’t imagine anyone tossing off so lightheartedly such solos…in anyone else’s hands, the solos would sound like work) And his pretty stuff was so soulful and with tone that’s uniquely his, that runs soo deep. And the effortless and creative playing on Cry of Love album is maybe some of the most amazing, underrated of all playing I think…so many moods, such groove, such unconventional, cool songs….and tons of overdubs, all interweaving, but not making the song heavier at all…just dancing butterflies of sound. I have never heard anything like it. Crap, I’m ranting. Many players get great magic, like Santana and Jeff Beck (original, awesome) but there’s just something different about Hendrix…I think it may be that he tapped into the depths of sound and soul and transcended the instrument. Think I better try to get that myself instead of ranting about it ;)) Sorry for the babble….

  5. no time to read all this stuff, but has anybody mentioned roy buchanan, dave hole, junior brown or danny gatton?

  6. NDee! Glad to hear school is going well! Now as far as those lions dealing with da’ badgers? nah,ain’t happin’! (lol)

    All man, the players you mentioned are fantastic, and you hit that proverbial “nail on the head” when you juxtaposed the “shredders” and their style to these cats! I’ve always dug DiMeola and Coryell.

    Now that “plane talk” method! It’s really great. You asked if I get a different sound or found myself thinking differently? BOTH! First, remove all that scale memorization right outta your head. Your desire to “stay” in the box, which pentatonics give you, or that “i’m playing notes, but they are really just broken bits of scales, and nothing really ingenious” is also removed. You find yourself realizing the “safe” notes. the 1-3-5 of any scale and chord. They are INSTANTLY recognizable, and once you understand and visualize them, the other 4 notes of the major scale are very apparent, 5 notes if you count the tonic twice. You get used to dealing with the roman numerals of the notes. you know, C major scale CDEFGAB, also I, II, III, IV etc. When you see and understand that the 1,3,5 of any scale are revealed in these 3 simple triads on strings 1-3, 2-4, 3-5, with another triad that deals with 4,5 and 6, it makes the entire fretboard, very accessible. Of course, it takes a little time to master the technique, but it starts to come very quickly. I really think you’d enjoy it. The one thing I don’t do is “play in a box. ” I always get compliments on being “all over the neck.” It just adds to the sound and tone, plus I am hearing it in my head that way, so I seek to play it that way. You mentioned the shredders and “box” playing. That is one of my problems with many of them. That’s one reason I dig Buckethead. He has an unmistakable style, if you pay attention to him, but he takes the box out to the box! He’s another one of those “Slominsky” guys. The thesaurus of scales and melodic patterns!

    Second Winter? Dude, Johnny Winter is………..Well, you already know, you’ve read my posts. Damn, he can get a great sound. And Eddie Hazel? He’s special. Games, Dames and Guitar Thangs got very little if ANY airplay. Remember, I found the LP at a place called nuggets in Boston in the late 70’s for 99 cents! One of my all-time favorite players sittin’ in a bin with a 99cent sticker! WOW! (lol) That’s the beauty of things; one can go and find a “classic” in someone’s garage or collection and purchase it for almost nothing! I always keep my eye open for great deals in those “small special vinyl” stores.

    Well, keep playin’, soon those folks will start asking you to play something for them, or their group, party etc…. ZEN GUITAR!!!!! One day, if we keep at it, we will actually be able to say to someone when they ask, “can you play that thing?” we’ll say, “a little, she’s a pesky little thing and somedays she fights back, but NOW, most of the time we can come to an agreement!” (lol)



  7. Joe Stanaway.

    Welcome to this long running discussion on guitar players. Buchanan, Gatton, Jr. Brown have all been discussed, and I believe there have been some actual music posts, although they may not still be active.

    Nothing on David Hole that I have ever seen. Hear he’s a slide aficionado, but haven’t listened to anything. Perhaps you’d like to enlighten us? Folks here are always up for a good player.



  8. i cant believe you people!! have you all forgotten lynyrd skynyrd? they are the most underrated guitarists of all time. how can you leave out legends, thats right, i said LEGENDS(forget influence, influence doesnt make you great) like allen collins and gary rossington. steve gaines and ed king weren with the band for long, but they were awesome too. anybody who has ever listened to “one more from the road” or “second helping” and perhaps “pronounced” knows what i mean. goodness sakes. kurt cobain is not even good enough to be on this list. just because he shot himself doesnt make him great. their songs are all the same too. lyrics make no sense. don’t know who ry cooder is, but allen collins should take his place, and gary rossington should take over for kurt cobain. seriously. david gilmour is much better than 82, and angus young at 96? oh my. oh well. where is joe walsh from the eagles, james gang, solo, sessions musician. he was amazing. oh well thats life.

  9. first off,and this may hurt you classic rock, “freebird” loving fanatics,but page is probably the most overated guitarist of the guitar god era ,though he did wear nice dragon suits.jack white and cobain are inexcusable, they should not be mentioned(cobain is a bit more understandable due to his influence in sculpting a genre, i.e johnny ramone). also, why should van halen be ranked higher than number 70? because he inspired such asshole, cock-rock, arena, bullshit, asshole soloing i.e cc deville and mick mars. and for all you slash fans, what the fuck? slash blows! understand this before getting buried with your beloved g n r tatooes. the aforementioned players wouldn’t know tasteful guitar playing if it dropped in their laps like an 18 year old asian fluffer.
    going back to classic cock, i mean classic rock, i cannot understand this fascination with joe perry and aerosmith. perry is third rate page and that should be taken as a compliment. that group is by far the most overrated group in rock n roll history(they looked the part of a coke band with a blues problem). aerosmith destroyed whatever was left of rock and roll by engaging in a duet with rappers run dmc. rock officially ended that day. so basically by supporting aerosmith you’re supporting terrorism.(somebody call the feather coming out of his anus,neo-con guitarist fuck ted nugent to get his bow and arrow)
    open up your ears people!! stop diggin’ this abrasive guitar playing. if you like it so much get into some nigel tufnel.
    another issue that has been bothering me is the bashing of peter frampton. i’m always reading some douche bag commenting about how “frampton blows”. check out the albums before the live one and take note. better yet dig into some live humble pie to hear a 21 year old peter tearing it up.i’m sure you samash noodlers can do better though with your douchy dime bag darrel licks.
    got to go put on the allmans at the fillmore east but it has been real. do me a favor make the world a safer place PUT DOWN YOUR AXES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. All i have to say is where’s Zakk Wylde he needs to bo on this list! Just his speed alone makes him better then alot of these guys, hes prolly faster then them all with exception to Vernon Reid.

  11. Wow, Alex…way to bring an overall intelligent discussion into the gutter…
    Yeah, sure Frampton is clean, but does that mean that Page and Perry aren’t good because they have different styles?
    Aerosmith’s musical achievements can’t be denied , whatever your opinion is. Joe Perry by association, is a God of Rock and Roll.
    Led Zeppelin are THE gods of Rock and Roll. Jimmy Page has crafted some of the most memorable riffs and solos in Rock and Roll history. He isn’t just a guitarist, he’s a composer. Listen to Ten Years Gone, Achilles Last Stand, The Song Remains the Same, Kashmir, or dare I say Stairway to Heaven; masterpieces, all of them.

    ….and I don’t like Freebird… Also, if I can posit another opinion of my own; much of the Allman Brother’s music tends to start sounding the same after a while. There is only so much you can do with a slide guitar, after all.

  12. this is the list coming from bob saget himself
    1. Kirk Hammett
    2. eddie van halen
    3. jimmy hendrix
    4. jimmy page
    5. eric clapton
    Kurt Cobain is horrible, Slash is not that good, neither is Angus Young and Red Hot Friggan Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante suck un believably. Name some solos better than One, Fade to Black, or Eruption. all of those being by edie or kirk. sincerely BOB SAGET

  13. I think Randy Rhoads was the most influential and the best “rock” guitarist of all time.And i think alot of people who truly appreciate an amazing guitarist like Randy would agree.And he was only 25 when he died.Who made up this list anyways?Were you high at the time?

  14. I think Randy Rhoads was the most influential and the best “rock” guitarist of all time.And i think alot of people who truly appreciate an amazing guitarist like Randy would agree.And he was only 25 when he died.Who made up this list anyways?Were you high at the time?RIP Randy.Loved by many.

  15. In general I agree with this list. Apart from other things a Guitarist is the one who has brains and power, so the list is quite correct.

  16. Any sort of list that Rolling Stone publishes needs to be taken with a grain of salt. Throughout its history, the writers of Rolling Stone have had a certain hatred toward prog-rock. Basically, if RS doesn’t like a band, the guitarist didn’t make the list or is placed waaaay down in the list. Eddie Van Halen is a good example. Eddie was a considerable influence, even today. Young guitar players still sit in their rooms, trying to learn the solos to Eruption or Ain’t Talking ’bout Love. Also, Alex Lifeson is a terrific guitarist but RS absolutely, positively HATE Rush with a passion.

    The greatest/best/most influential guitar players can be debated until the cows come home. All you guitar players out there, just keep playing and admiring who you want. One of the greatest things about music is that you can like what you like and no one can tell you any different.

  17. Now this was the most inaccurate list of top guitarists I’ve ever seen. Jimi Hendrix is the only person on the whole list that makes sense. Chuck Berry was influential but not a great guitarist. HOW DID PETE TOWNSHEND RANK 50? He belongs in at least the top 15.

    this list should go
    1. Hendrix
    2. Clapton
    3. Page
    4. Stevie Ray vaughn
    5. Jeff Beck

    That may be a little inaccurate, but its just my opinion. But the top three is dead on, no question. Rolling Stone only made this list screwed up because they wanted it to be controversial, and thats just exactly what it is.

  18. Wow!!!Jimmy Page #9 definately #1 or #2. #70 Van Halen Hmm!!! interesting. Randy Rhoads definately should be top 10. Kurt Cobain does not 12 actually not even on the the list. Well that’s about all I got ot say. Oh wait I remembered “WHERE THE HELL IS PETER FRAMPTON?” I mean he is better than half the guys up there. Have you heard his song “Do you feel like we do” or “Show me the way”.

  19. FINALLY..THE LAST WORD ON TOP GUITARISTS…DEFINITIVE LIST FOLLOWING based on “everything”..influence, style, following…the MUSICIANS CHOICE
    all you little smashing pumpkins can go read a book about it

    1. django reinhardt (he made the axe “up front”)
    2. robert johnson (made a deal w/the devil=gots to be great)
    3. jimmy page OR john mclaughlin (cause he’s/they’ve done stuff no-one can/has done)
    4. SRV OR Robert Quine (richard hell..remember those tasty licks?)
    5. EVHalen (same as above)
    6. Sonny Sharrock (hey, he did spaceghost theme…kapow!)
    7. walter becker (steely dan ws nuttin w/out him)
    8. mark knopfler
    9. duane allman OR Hendrix
    10. Speedy west and merle travis and bryant and…the team of all time?
    11.Brian May…though could be higher…all the above are basically in the same league
    12. Isaac Brock and Johnny Marr…another team
    13. Prince….could even be #3?
    14. ALex Lifeson
    15. ROry Gallagher….Leslie West?

    segovia #1 really? yeh, but hes kinda in a different field

    brad paisley (ugh, hate his songs but he can play) vince gill (the same)Keith Urban (not quite as bad…even good sometimes)
    and the rest…….clapton (c’mon, good but bland) TRex, ron Wood, P Townsend, Mick Jones, santana…all great in their own right…even kirk hammet and the nuge can rock it a bit.

  20. 1. This list is purely based on popularity, even though amazing that Slash doesn’t appears
    2. No way Jimi Hendrix is the greatest guitarist of ALL TIME, not possible.
    3. Jimmy Page 9, no way. It should be 3, or even 2.
    4. Keith Richards 10, they don’t want to make fools of themselves. “Rolling Stones”? That calls your attention? Huh?
    5. The List is almost full of rock guitarist and mostly english. I’m from Uruguay (Latinamerica)!
    6.Guitarist that are overrated:
    11. Kirk Hammett
    12. Kurt Kobain (P.O.P.U.L.A.R.T.Y.!)
    16. Johnny Ramon (are you kidding me?)
    17. Jack White (¿?)
    24. The Edge (The what? edge? kiss my ass!)
    48. Joe Perry (Mediocre rock guitaris, for my opinion, too high)
    7. Guitarist that are underrated:
    45. Frank Zappa (45? 45?? BLow me.)
    70. Eddie Van Halen (I don’t like him, but he’s too good for… For 70?! Damn!
    82. David Gilmour (I’m gonna throw down!)
    85. Randy Rhoads (Why??? He’s really good? You cruel people,he was awesome, he may died young but he’s guitar playing kick the ass of the top
    86. Tony Iommi ( Bastards!)

    8. Guitarist that should be on the list (at least)
    John Petrucci, Paul Gilbert, Buckethead, Marty Friedman, Steve Morse, Dimebag Darrell, Steve Vai, Michael Angelo Batio (HE PLAYS 2 GUITARS, AT THE SAME FUCKING TIME!!) Mathias Elkundh (From Freak Kitchen).
    9. The List is a complete ripoff for people who don’t know shit about guitar, or even music
    10. A good list is one from Digitaldreamdoor.com.
    11. I dispite the Rolling Stones magazines, full of crap.

  21. this is one of the stupidists lists i have ever seen and comments that people have left make me sick. First of all you haveeeee to have eddie higher than…70? thats ridiculous, hes argueably the greatest ever. And keith richards is not a “double duh” at all, in fact he kinda sucks, that band is all mick, im sorry theyre one of the greatest bands but he is not even close to the greatest guitarists. And the most underrated guitarist ever, steve lukather, should b up there somewhere. and kurt cobain at 12 really really makes me wanna gouge my eyes out after seeing that, i wouldnt even put him in my top 100. that was very upseting to see. i could have made a better list when i was fuckin 10 years old, this whole thing needs to be severely changed around.

  22. dickey betts at 58? come on. he was much better than that. eddie van halen at number 70, i dont have a problem with. i often think he is very overrated. he was not original at all and half if not all of his songs sound exactly that same. his solos are no different from one another. i hate people who say george harrison shouldnt be as high number 22. if anything, he should be higher. you want to talk about one of the most original guitarists of all time, his name comes up immediately

  23. wow rolling stone magazine is shit ok the #1 of all time is jimmy page cuz he could play circles around hendrix. Sure ill give it to hendrix he was good but he had no idea what he was doing he just hit as many notes as he could as fast as he could. Page did the same but was more clean and had a better riff than any1 listen to whole lotta love tht will rock u heres my list

    1. jimmy page
    2. eddie van halen
    3. eric clapton
    4. pete townshend
    5. tony iommi
    6. slash
    7. david gilmour
    8. alex lifeson
    8. john fruisante
    9. phil collen
    10. steve clark

  24. What in the f$%k?!?!? Who picked the guys on THAT list? I mean, I won’t argue with the “greats” because they founded and pretty much invented much of the techniques, but Kurt Cobain and Jack White?!?!? What the F$%K?!?!? So, playing two chords is considered talent nowadays?

    I guess too many dumb-a$$es got a say in things….but of course you can’t trust a list generated by a magazine that claims to be about music, but has mostly (ugh) half naked guy pictures in it.

    I think most of the people who voted should stick with picking out curtains, and hair styles for little poodles.

  25. I think it might be time to disable comments on this post. Over 1700 comments, most of them subjective opinions that matter little. J, Sharp, and a few others contributed some intelligent discussion and knowledge; otherwise, I should’ve deleted the rest.

    Or maybe I should inject this post with ads and see if I make any revenue from it.

  26. wow… for all you ppl who think randy rhodes, page ,clapton, and hendrix were greatest guitarists, you guys are idiots and have no idea wat kinda technique it takes to play guitar good… hendrix is one of the most overrated guitarist.. for his time he was good.. but in modern day music he wouldnt even begin to keep up…there are far better guitarists out there than hendrix.. they completly left out some of the best guitarists… for 1 yngwie malmsteen… he revolutionized gutiar playing with his technique of sweeping arpeggios… if anyone has ever listen to him than they would agree that he should get either the #1 of #2 spot.. also eric johnson isnt on the list.. he is one of the cleanest guitarists ive ever heard… eddie van halen changed the guitar playing wit his right hand hammer technique..so its a joke that he is at the #70 spot… and since then ppl have perfected that technique using multiple fingers to right hand hammer… herman lee is also an amazin guitarist… so here’s my top…

    #1- Yngwie Malmsteen (rising force)
    #2- Eric Johnson (erin johnson)
    #3- Timo Tolkki (stratovarius)
    #4- Eddie Van Halen (vanhalen)
    #5- Paul Gilbert
    #6- Steve Vai
    #7- John Petrucci (dream theater)
    #8- Michael Angelo Batio (nitro)
    #9- Herman Li (dragonforce)
    #10- Luca Turilli (rhapsody)

  27. p.s.- if any of you were wondering why i put yngwie at #1, its because he totally changed the way guitar is played today wit his sweeping.. he is not just a good guitarist but he is an amazing musician… he is absolutly phenomenal composer and deserves alot of credit.

  28. LOL, Kurt Cobain #12 is a complete joke – he was NOT even an above average guitarist. Though I am not a fan of Van Halen, to have EVH 58 spots below Cobain is comical. And where the hell is Mike McCready of Pearl Jam???

  29. It’s a bit immature calling everybody who doesn’t share your opinion idiots. I enjoyed reading Sharp and those other guy’s posts, but lately it’s been pretty bad. Instead of representing the other side in pointless debate, I’ve decided to quit this board. I think that the host has the right idea.

  30. and 1 more thing:
    whoever’s putting Joe Perry and Kurt Cobain on their tops…..
    Christ, people, they’re NOT THAT GOOD!
    Cobain is a fucking beast, yeah, but if you don’t at least have Slash ahead of him, then you’re a dumbass. and guess what? Slash ISN’T
    ahead of him. and joe perry?
    how are you gonna have an average guitarist in your top 10?
    anyway, here’s mine(in no particular order). feel free to diss it all you want, assholes, but it’s the truth.
    1.) Eric Clapton
    2.) Jimmy Page
    3.) Eddie Van Halen
    4.) Jimi Hendrix
    5.) Carlos Santana
    6.) Stevie Ray Vaughn
    7.) Slash
    8.) David Gilmour
    9.) Duane Allman
    10.) Jeff Beck

  31. It’s really too bad to see folks “quitting” the board,and such subjective comments from others. However, Turambar has a VERY GOOD POINT! Attacking folks because they don’t share “your” opinion or viewpoint is very immature and shows an EXTREMELY myopic approach to the guitar, guitar playing and music in general. Folks can always agree to disagree. NO ONE has a monopoly on guitar playing, and as someone who has played the instrument for many years, and in some cases, longer than several posts have been alive, I can say this: Every SERIOUS professional I know or have spoken with which includes Grant Green, Vernon Reid, Eric Sardinas, Steve Vai and Jimi Hazel are NOTHING BUT complimentary towards other players, be they contemporaries or long deceased. They give credit where credit is due, AND they don’t even ENTERTAIN the NEGATIVE, and/or foolish commentaries.

    I have spent a great deal of time on this board explaining out a variety of positions, and why they are there. I have tried to introduce new players of differing genres either through direct comment and music posts, or indirectly mentioning their names in the course of conversation. I hope it has been helpful, and to those that took advantage of the conversations held, particularly those with Sharp, NDee and several others, I hope their playing and general musical knowledge has shown some improvement or awareness.

    Folks are NEVER going to agree on everything. However, if one has a “discerning” eye, they can tell the type of music one appreciates and what “floats one’s boat!” Most younger cats really dig shredders and they are impressed by the “technical” expertise required to perform certain movements. Many of us older cats really dig the “emotional” expertise and individual style/physical dexterity of the Leslie West’s, Jimi Hendrix’s, Eric Clapton’s and Stevie Ray Vaughn’s just to name a few. However, in no way do we dismiss a Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Paul Gilbert, Malmsteen or Batio and how impressive their playing and speed work happens to be.
    Personally I really dig Gilbert and Buckethead, but on the same token, Yngwie does NOTHING for me, and I know everything he is doing. However, that doesn’t make me call him emotionally vapid and sounding more like a computer than a guitar player. I appreciate what he can do, and I can and will listen to several of his songs, and reference him to my students, as he deserved to be “studied” as do ALL the artists I’ve mentioned, and many more who haven’t received recognition on this board.

    I will say this one last time: DIG WHO YOU DIG, THAT’S COOL. COPY THEM, STUDY THEM, BUT DON’T STOP THERE, STUDY THOSE YOU CAN’T STAND, OR YOU THINK “are OVERRATED”, they have a UNIQUE style, and Millions of others aren’t WRONG or idiots because they think so. Music itself is SUBJECTIVE. What is important is HOW DOES IT MAKE YOU FEEL? If it makes you happy, uplifts your spirit and soul, then who is ANYONE to criticize you? BY doing so, it makes you more of a misanthrope than a Music “expert.” Sure, we may all agree that Jack White shouldn’t be in the top 100 or 1000 guitar players, but for me, Ball and Biscuit rocks!!!!!! It’s just good ole rock n’ roll, and lest we forget, didn’t many of us start playing to just JAM, and let loose with our emotions, and CONNECT with other folks who we probably wouldn’t connect to otherwise? Isn’t it amazing when you see the “nerd” or the “cool/perfect” kid or some other inappropriate stereotyped character sit down with a guitar, bass, horn, keyboard or whatever, and watch what is REALLY INSIDE shine through? Music always brings me closer to a person. WHY? It gives me insight into something deeper. I may not dig the particular music, but I know enough about music to be able to provide that person with other things I may have heard that I think might make them smile.

    That’s what music is to me, making people smile!!!! So consider that the next time you go to criticize another person’s feelings or beliefs about music, guitar players et al. You always catch more flies with sugar than salt.

    peace and as always, NEVER STOP PLAYING


  32. In the spirit of J’s and other’s reasonable remarks, I won’t disable comments for this post; I WILL (and have) delete those that are abusive, offensive, and senseless. I have to do something about this page, though, to improve its navigation and speed.

    If only I could make money from this!

  33. I would have put Zappa a lot higher, as well as including Phil Keaggy. Every list of top 100 is so different (except for Hendrix), so they seem pretty meaningless. Anyway, who really cares who is on this or that list? A list doesn’t have anything to do with who they are or what they have accomplished. It just makes you feel people got cheated who you think should have been included. There is, after all, no objective criteria.

  34. hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. EDDIE VAN HALEN IS NUMBER ONE AND ALL WAYS WILL BE!!!!!!!!!!!thanks for your time. ha

  35. Very nice J. You have definitly introduced me to some excellent players and I thank you sooooooo much. Lance Lopez, Corrado Rustici, Roy Buchanan, and Johnny Winter to name a few. These guys are awesome, and its weird thinking about how i would not have learned who some of these guys were if it were not for this forum…i think thats pretty cool.

    Anyway, has anyone taken a peak at the Slonimksy book “the Thesauras of Scales and Melodic Patterns”? I know guys like Coltrane and Buckethead used it to their advantage. I picked it up the other day and frankly i cannot make sense of it at all. Im having difficulty applying it to my improvization.

  36. LOL!!!!! Boy NDee do I know where you’re coming from! (smile) try the guitar compendium by howard roberts and garry hagberg first. Since I was trained via berklee and reading was my “first” thing, Slominsky and that complicated stuff isn’t really all that complicated, but the application becomes another ordeal. the guitar compendium is much better, at least to start. How’s your theory? I am just amazed at trane and buckethead and vernon reid who was the first person to mention slominsky to me, but then when you analyze those guys and their ability to play, you really want to “at least” review slominsky. are you a “reader?” if not, check out MI (the musicians institute) book on sight reading. it’s called “music reading for guitar, complete method” by david oakes. I’d shelve slominsky for a little while until you really “feel” you want to attack that type of material. it can be a “downer!” (lol) i’d move to master the compendium and sight reading then kick slominksy in the proverbial azz. also, again, how’s your theory? scotty west’s absolutely understand guitar is actually quite good for understanding the “box”, as it has been called! For me, while I really admire Hendrix and SRV and several others, I believe that a thorough understanding of music theory is essential, for thereafter one only needs to master the movement around their instrument. ( ONLY needs to master…..(lol)) however, when one really has “theory” down, they can do anything they want on the instrument provided they’ve actually put in a little time to develop physically, and they have the “normal” amount of curiosity and creativity. everything else will fall into place.

    also, have you ever read or heard of a book entitled, “how to write songs on the guitar” by rikky rooksby? dude, it will make your creativity soar, as will, learn to write your own rock riffs by stuart bull. I love the fact he says that, good composers borrow, great composers “STEAL!” Ever since I was a child I could always hear other things I liked in several different songs, but unlike the george harrison “my sweet lord” and the “he’s so fine” drama, these songs didn’t result in legal action, although I really do think Randy California has cause against jimmy page and taurus vs. stairway to heaven, at least the opening! (lol)

    just remember, slominsky’s stuff hit the big time with the revelation that Coltrane was into it, and we all know that Coltrane can be argued to be synonymous with jazz.

    anyway, if you decide to pickup anything mentioned, let me know if it helps, somewhat.

    peace, and of course NEVER STOP PLAYING! EVER!!!!! you will only get better, wiser and deeper as you begin to connect to something universal…., music!



  37. Hey NDee,

    Just spoke to a buddy who is a pretty fine guitar player and mentioned your dilemma . He said to check out:

    Mel Bay’s Complete Book of Guitar Improvisation
    by Vincent Bredice

    I am personally not familiar with it, but if my buddy says it has merit, I trust him.



  38. Hey,
    I’ve been able to read music for quite some time…that is not my problem with Slonimsky. It is more of how to apply these ideas and achieve a new improvizational sound. I can play the scales and patterns until the cows come home, but i feel like that is’nt doing anything for me if I cannot use it when i play. I am really into lead accompaniment and am searching for new ideas. Although recently i have found that one of the best things for me is just to try anything when i am improvizing in a song. What i mean by that is to not only play all the notes in the scale, but play others too just to see if i can get a new unique sound. Sometimes it fails other times it can sound pretty cool. Lately i have been using more chromatic type runs as opposed to sticking with the just the colorful notes of the scale. A couple posts back i was explaining my difficulties with improvization over Giant Steps and you said something along the lines of “let your fingers fall in place” and i think i am starting to do that a little better. I’m beginning to think less in patterns and just kind of “feeling” it more. Sometimes it backfires other times it can sound neat–i just need to find that nitch where it always sounds good (lol).

    By the way ill look into the compendium next time i go to the book store, I could probably use it.

    Oh and Happy Holidays!

  39. 1Eddie Van Halen( enough said)
    2.Don Donigan(disturbed if u didn’t know… even if he does get showed up by the best lead singer David Draiman and the best drummer Mike Wengren… and disturbed isn’t even my favorite band)
    3.Slash(best riff guitarist ever other than eddie)
    4.Yngwie Malmsteen(AMAZING LIVE)
    5.Jimi Hendrix(meh…. hes not as good as people say)
    6.Uli Jon Roth(Scorpions if u didn’t know… he IS better than Matthias Jabs) keyword is
    7.Brian May(just look at queens success even after freddie died)
    8.Jimmy Paige(STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN)
    9. Kirk Hammet(ONE,MASTER OF PUPPETS)
    10.Eric Johnson(CLIFFS OF DOVER)

  40. i blame linkin park for ruining some of the credibility of rock….who in their right mind would mix rap with rock anyway… THEY SUCK…. I went to go see them live a couple weeks ago…… I FELL ASLEEP LITERALLY…. their moshes are so tiny an ant couldn’t get squashed…. they shoulda listened to bands like slipknot or korn…. i realize this is a little modern than the rest of this website… but i just wanted to put that out their…. o yeah and i have a correction i meant to put for brian may b4 freddie died and how he contributed to it

  41. o and for those of u that r judging how i feel about disturbed’s band members… listen to theese…
    meaning of life
    sons of plunder
    the game
    dropping plates
    just stop
    pain redifined
    sacred lie

  42. NDee,

    I think I know what you mean. It just takes time to “apply” all that stuff to your playing. Just keep pluggin’ away, it will come. It is quite common to run into the “solos” I am playing sound like the scales I’ve practiced thing. are you familiar with:

    Outside Guitar Licks: Lessons and Lines for Taking Your Playing Over the Top Musicians Institute
    by Jean Marc Belkadi

    do you ever go to musician’s institute press? I am really big on MI. also, do you fingerpick? if so,fred sokolow has an interesting dvd called “better lead guitar through chords.”

    also check out this page:

    http://www.tomhess.net/phrasing.php this might be exactly what you’re looking for.I think it might help a little. let me know.

    Happy Holidays!

    peace and NEVER STOP PLAYING!


  43. Lets be reasonable… kirk hammet is trash. The man who wrote his solos and invented that style, Dave Mustaine isn’t on the list.

  44. wow…. no offense MR. 18inch…. lol…. but if u can honestly think that dave mustaine is better than kirk hammet than i think ur an idiot…. kirk hammet may not have invented the style he plays like mustaine did…. but hammet perfected it… he perfected the solos… he perfected everything mustaine couldn’t… i think mustaine is a great guitarist recognizable as around 40th…. but hammet is such a better guitarist from the basics up… i think u need to listen to some more metallica

  45. 1. Stevie Ray Vaughn
    2. Jimmy Page
    3. Jimmie Hendricks
    4. Gary Moore or Jeff Beck
    5. EVH
    6. Johnny Winter or any of the Kings
    7. Rory Gallagher or Eric Clapton
    8. Albert Collins or Buddy Guy
    9. Alivin Lee or T-Bone Walker
    10. Eric Johnson

    I like rock, but to ponder this you need to get away from that tunnel vision….besides after reading all these posts I would have to say, that while some people here know what they are talking about, most would not know tone or talent from their jealous asses… peace out

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